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The Innovators Program strives to have a diverse representation of universities and encourages applications from early career faculty who are members of a group that are historically under-represented in social sciences and STEM, including faculty who are Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, and Hispanic or Latino, female, and those with disabilities, Veterans and LGBTQA. NCAR is committed to broadening participation in the geosciences and specifically invites scholars from Minority Serving Institutions and those from groups who traditionally have been underrepresented in the sciences to apply.

Eligibility Criteria

Who may submit applications to the Innovators Program

Early career faculty at a U.S. university who:

  • Hold a doctoral degree in the Social, Policy, or Behavioral Sciences;

  • Faculty with doctorates in Interdisciplinary fields will be considered on a case by case basis. If you have a doctorate in a traditional STEM field, unfortunately, we cannot consider your application;

  • Are employed at a U.S. University in a tenure-track (or tenure-track-equivalent) position at the time of the proposal submission;

  • Have completed at least 1 year in a tenure-track (or equivalent) faculty appointment (i.e. at the Assistant Professor level) by the start of the award period (Aug./Sept. 2021);

  • Are “early career” per the following definition: completed no more than 1 year as a faculty with tenure (i.e. Associate Professor level) by the start of the award period (Aug./Sept. 2021);

  • Are a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or U.S. permanent resident by the time of application. If you are a visa holder, please contact us.

  • Can nominate a graduate student (must be from your university and you must be their primary faculty advisor) who participates in the Innovators Program for the duration of the fellowship period. Prospective faculty applicants do not need to identify a graduate student to apply to the Innovators Program. We prefer that graduate students are pursuing a doctoral degree and can participate for the entire 2 year fellowship. However, we acknowledge individual circumstances may not make this possible, and we can accommodate unique situations with advanced notice.

Tenure-track equivalency - For a position to be considered a tenure-track-equivalent position, it must meet all of the following requirements: (1) the employee has a continuing appointment at a US university that is expected to last the two years of the Innovator Program appointment; (2) the faculty appointment has substantial research and educational responsibilities; (3) the employee is the primary faculty advisor for the graduate student they nominate (see above); and (4) the proposed project relates to the employee's career goals and job responsibilities as well as to the mission of the applicant’s department or university.

Not eligible

Faculty members who hold Adjunct Faculty or equivalent appointments are not eligible for the Innovators program.

2021-2022 Application Process

The 2021-2022 application period is now CLOSED. For updates join our e-mail list. Sign up here: